Popular at the turn of the century, round barns lightly dot the farm landscape in all parts of the United States. In "Stories from a Round Barn," writer Jackie Dougan Jackson found they were efficient because "when the cows' heads were closest to the center silo it made cow cleanup easier." Built in 1914, this trim, round barn was designed to be an efficient space for dairy cattle. Years later, when the farm was purchased to build a bed and breakfast, the homeowners were so inspired by the beauty and intricateness of the round barn, that they wanted an historic-looking home to match this illustrious outbuilding.
Basing the new home on an 1861 house designed by the famous architect, Samuel Sloan, the twenty-first-century owners constructed a cozy, red-bricked home that feels as if it's always been part of the historic farm's landscape. Today, guests can loll in generous rocking chairs on the porch, taking in the sights of a farm resting smartly on the rolling hills of Red Wing, Minnesota.
A hop off the porch leads garden enthusiasts to the vegetable beds and harvesting shed. The gate won't stay open for long, as this tall fence was built with hidden wires to keep rabbits and deer from devouring tasty greens.
Like a scene from a museum of bygones, the dining room's wide planked floors, hefty stone fireplace and candle-like chandelier makes one wonder if time has slipped quietly into the nineteenth century.
Hanging lanterns, cleverly wired to appear gas lit, suspend over the primitive design of the kitchen table. Cornflower cookery are at the ready, waiting for a bustling cook to prepare a hearty meal, likely flavored with herbs from the kitchen garden.
Back outside, another option for country cooking is the open-air stone oven, ready with a pile of chopped firewood.
Put away your screens and headphones and sink into cushions of the velvet couch or rest your back into the upright leather armchairs. Country accents of doilies, rag dolls and an upright parlor piano take visitors back to a time when visiting meant long hours together, sharing stories and easy conversation.
High above the crisp cotton pillows, the intricately carved headboard of the antique wood bed is the centerpiece of this spacious bedroom.
Wispy lace curtains await a gentle country breeze, which will send sweet smells into the rose-papered bedroom with its bed lamps poised for long evenings reading good books.
Tulip lamps hang upside down from burnt brass fixtures and warm this large country-style bathroom.
For an inside look at the barn that inspired it all, note the light-filled space and open ceiling leading to the upstairs hay loft.
Exposed beam work shows off the original architecture of the structure.
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